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WATERWHEEL
ROUTE
HOME > WHAT TO DO > ROUTES > WATERWHEEL ROUTE
In Abarán and on both banks of the Segura River we find the region of Murcia's foremost set of traditional norias, or waterwheels, still used today to irrigate orchards and groves of fruit trees.

These waterwheels are fed by water from two acequias, or irrigation canals - Charrara and Principal - which take the waters of the Segura upstream, at Menju.

The pedestrian route linking the waterwheels, stretching just over one kilometer, runs through a river and agricultural landscape of ethnographic interest in the heart of the Ricote Valley.

THE WATERWHEELS
The Arabs were not the inventors of the waterwheel, but they put them to greater use than any other group. A waterwheel is an efficient machine that, exploiting hydraulic energy, a renewable resource, raises water from an acequia, or irrigation canal, to a higher one, thereby increasing the area of irrigable land.
Waterwheel Route

THE ROUTE

1. NORIA DE LA HOYA DE DON GARCÍA
This dates back to 1818 and measures 8.20 meters in diameter, 1.05 m across, and has 48 paddles. Entirely built of wood, it is still very well preserved. It draws water from the main acequia, on the left bank of the Segura, raising 42 liters per second to irrigate some 233 tahúllas. It was rebuilt in 1951.
Noria de La Hoya de  Don García. Click to enlarge
2. NORIA GRANDE
La Noria Grande is located in the Parque de las Norias, near the center of Abarán. It dates from 1805 and was rebuilt in 1951. Reputed to be Europe's largest functioning waterwheel, it measures 11.92 meters in diameter, 1.18 meters wide, and has 64 paddles. It lifts 32 liters of water per second from the main acequia, irrigating 155 tahúllas on the left bank of the Segura.
Noria Grande. Click to enlarge
3. NORIA DE CANDELÓN
This metal wheel was built in 1850 and remodeled in 1968, respecting the original structure. It measures 6 m in diameter and 0.48 m wide, and is equipped with 40 paddles. It raises the water from the Charrara acequia to an irrigation pool, which serves to water some 15 tahúllas in Candelón, on the right bank of the Segura.
Noria de Candelón.  Click to enlarge
4. NORIA DE LA ÑORICA
This waterwheel is the smallest in Abarán (hence its name, in the diminutive). Measuring 5 meters in diameter and 0.40 m wide, it is outfitted with 40 paddles. It is metallic, with some wooden elements, and draws water from the Charrara acequia to fill an irrigation pool, with which it waters 8 tahúllas in the Chelo and Jacintón Canyon.
Noria de La Ñorica.  Click to enlarge
Abarán

ABARÁN

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